Get Smarter!

Welcome To My Blog

Welcome To My Blog

Please click on each link to read the blog entry. We do not have comments enabled due security and harassment concerns, but ask us if you have a question or an idea for new blog post.

Melon-Collie. Depression & Diet

Melon-Collie. Depression & Diet

Study after study affirms–we are what we eat. Diet plays a big role in depression and other forms of mental illness. Sadly, people want the easy shortcut of supplements instead of a diet of real, whole foods, or they refuse to give up the foods […]

Step away from that Xanax

Step away from that Xanax

Stressed out? Angry? In pain? Try this simple solution to calming your fight or flight instincts.

Box Breathing:
Put your hands on your belly and take a few deep breathes into your belly
Focus on breathing down into the belly and not up into the neck. Imagine air pouring into your lungs and filling them from the bottom-up.
Take a nice full breath to the count of FIVE
Hold for FIVE
Exhale for FIVE
Hold lungs empty for FIVE
repeat several times.
Bonus? You can do this anywhere, anytime!

Knowledge is Power

Phthalates are endocrine disrupters found in prepared and packaged foods and personal care products. that have been linked to asthma, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, breast cancer, obesity, type II diabetes, low IQ, neurodevelopmental issues, behavioral issues, autism spectrum disorders, altered reproductive development and male fertility issues. […]

Intermittent Fasting and Circadian Clocks

  We all have an internal clock, the circadian clock (actually many of them, your organs have them too). We are learning that ignoring that clock causes disease and obesity. In modern life, we have artificial light and stimulation (like eating) that throws off the […]

Dying For an Accurate Diagnosis

Dying For an Accurate Diagnosis

Lyme disease is often misdiagnosed as Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Arthritis and even Alzheimer’s Disease. That’s why you need to insist on being tested for it and the 10 other tick-borne viruses common to the United States–and why your independent RN Patient Advocate is so focused on correct diagnosis. Thirty to forty percent (the government’s own numbers) of medical diagnosis in America are wrong–it is a mistake that could cost your, or your loved one’s, lives.

Kris Kristofferson was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease after years of worsening memory problems.  But, earlier this year, a doctor decided to test Kristofferson for Lyme disease, which can cause neurological problems, including memory issues and what some describe as “brain fog,” as well as a broad range of other symptoms. The test came back positive.

“He was taking all these medications for things he doesn’t have, and they all have side effects,” his wife said. After the Lyme diagnosis, he dropped those medications and went through three weeks of treatment for Lyme. Now, his friends say, he is back to his old self. Lyme disease has effective treatments, Alzheimer’s often does not.

The correct diagnosis likely saved his live, or at least his quality of life.

Real Breast Cancer Awareness

I was told it was breast cancer awareness week and to play this game by sharing a secret message to put an emoticon on your social media profile. But instead, I’m going to teach you how to prevent breast cancer. #1 (all cancer) Eat a […]

Can Your Brain Heal Your Body?

Can Your Brain Heal Your Body?

It is called the Placebo Effect and it is a phrase commonly used to discredit therapies in testing as in, “It is no better than a placebo.”  But what does that mean?  The word placebo literally means:  ‘I do nothing.’  The placebo effect is when […]

Does Nurse Advocacy Really Work for Patients?

Year after year, nurses are voted the most trusted professionals in America.  I think that is, in part, because people know the value of the emotional support, education, care and guidance they get from nurses–and the deep compassion and empathy behind it.  A good nurse can make you feel better even if the treatment doesn’t (like in chemotherapy, which often makes one feel worse).  That effect is magnified when the nurse is not overwhelmed with passing medications, assisting doctors or monitoring a lot of sick people, as we are in the hospital setting.  As nurse advocates, or nurse navigators, we have only one client at a time so it only seems logical that that one person or family would derive tremendous benefit–but it hadn’t been proven until now.

In a recent study, published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, cancer patients who had access to a nurse navigator did “significantly better” than their counterparts in a control group.

“Cancer patients who had access to a nurse navigator soon after diagnosis reported feeling that they had better emotional support and were better informed, and they were more involved in their care.”

The nurse navigators averaged 18 contacts with their patients over four months, usually via phone.  It was not surprising that during this time the clients had significantly fewer problems with care, especially psychosocial care, care coordination, and information and felt much better than the group that got only extra education.  The surprise was that when measured at 12 months–eight months after the partnership with the nurse navigator ended–the patients still scored just as high in their progress testing.  The work they did together stuck with the cancer patients long after the test period–the benefit was lasting.

As an iRNPA, this kind of measurement is important to me, but not as important as the comfort and gratitude on the faces, and in the voices, of my clients. They, nor I, require double-blind peer reviewed controlled studies to know that what I do matters to them and that the work we do together is critically important.